Smart textiles is the modification of fibers, fabrics and special articals which is produceing day by day in different way and different techniques. Many intelligent textiles already feature in advanced types of clothing, principally for protection and safety and for added fashion or convenience. Smart materials or textiles can be defined as the materials and structures which have sense or can sense the environmental conditions or stimuli, whereas intelligent textiles can be defined as textile structures which not only can sense but can also react and respond to environmental conditions or stimuli. These stimuli as well as response, could be thermal, chemical, mechanical, electric, magnetic or from other source. Classification of Smart Textiles:
According to functional activity smart textiles can be classified in three categories:
▪ Passive Smart Textiles:
The first generations of smart textiles, which can only sense the environmental conditions or stimulus, are called Passive Smart Textiles. ▪ Active Smart Textiles:
The second generation has both actuators and sensors. The actuators act upon the detected signal either directly or from a central control unit. Active Smart textiles are shape memory, chameleonic, water-resistant and vapour permeable (hydrophilic/non porous), heat storage, thermo regulated, vapour absorbing, heat evolving fabric and electrically heated suits. ▪ Ultra Smart Textiles:
Very smart textiles are the third generation of smart textiles, which can sense, react and adopt themselves to environmental conditions or stimuli. A very smart or intelligent textile essentially consists of a unit, which works like the brain, with cognition, reasoning and activating capacities. The production of very smart textiles is now a reality after a successful marriage of traditional textiles and clothing technology with other branches of science like material science, structural mechanics, sensor and actuator technology, advance processing technology, communication, artificial intelligence, biology etc. Smart textile in Medicine:
Due to astounding technological developments, technical textiles are extensively used in the healthcare industry today. In the field of medical application, technical textiles are not just used in contact with the skin, but also fulfill important functions within the body (intra-corporal applications like implants). Technical textiles offer medical and hygiene industry with unparalleled protection, comfortable. These highly specialized and bio- compatible technical textiles, used for medical and hygiene applications are called “MEDTECH.” The characteristics required of MEDTECH vary depending on the task for which they are to be used. Some applications demand a protective function, others a high absorptive capacity and some other others impermeability. characteristic of these textiles Depending on the nature of application; most of the medical products are disposable in nature and are made of nonwoven fabrics. In global markets disposables are fast replacing non-disposable health care textiles.
Some areas of usage are:
* Healthcare/ hygiene products- Include bedding, clothing, surgical clothes, products for feminine hygiene like sanitary napkins, baby and adult diapers etc. * Non-implantable materials- For wound care that includes absorbent pad (wound contact layer, base material viscose, plastic film) and bandages (simple inelastic/elastic, orthopedic, plasters, gauzes, lint, padding) * Textiles in Extracorporeal devices- Like artificial kidney, liver and lungs. * Implantable materials- Like sutures (biodegradable and non-biodegradable), soft tissue implants, artificial tendon (meshes), artificial ligament, artificial cartilage, orthopedic implants artificial joint, cardiovascular implants vascular grafts, heart valves.
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